Welcome to Parkdale Primary School
Welcome to the prospectus for Parkdale Primary School. We are a large, happy, multi-cultural school on the outskirts of the City of Nottingham, just (by a few hundred metres) into the County of Nottinghamshire. We are part of the Transform Trust, a multi-academy trust based in the East Midlands, comprising 19 schools at the time of writing.
We pride ourselves on our caring, nurturing approach and going the ‘extra-mile’ to help children and their families. We are a community school, with several of the staff living in the neighbourhood and some even having attended here as pupils!
We provide an exciting and broad curriculum, full of creative arts, sports and personal/social development, as well as striving for high academic standards.
Our most recent OfSTED was Good (May 2014) and we know that we have done many things to improve the school even further since then.
Our assessment results are usually above national and local averages and all groups of children tend to make better than average progress with us.
We hope this online prospectus (and the rest of our website) will give you a flavour of our school.
Of course, you are also welcome to visit us, by appointment. Feel free to give us a call to arrange this if you are considering sending your child to our school.
Thank you for your interest
0115 911 0066
0115 911 0066
0115 911 0084
Mr P Hillier
Chair of Governors
Mrs A Burrows
11 Kirtley Drive, Nottingham NG7 1LD
Tel: 0115 982 5090
Our Ethos & Values
The driving force behind all that happens at Parkdale is the shared aim of every child enjoying access to a stimulating and engaging education, developing both academically and socially and leaving us as life long, independent learners, who are prepared to play a positive role in society.
Parkdale has a culture of high aspiration and expectation for each and every child, which enables our children to acquire knowledge, understanding and develop learning throughout the school. We are a school that strives to work in partnership with parents and families. We are open and transparent and we share information.
We strive to create a learning community that extends beyond the perimeter of our site. We do everything we can to support families for the benefit of their children.
The Transform Trust
Since the 1st of July 2018, Parkdale has been an Academy as part of the Transform Trust. We have had a long and successful partnership with Transform, having been a part of the Transform Teaching School Alliance for several years previously.
The Transform Trust was formed in 2013 and we became the 15th member school. All are Primary schools. The majority of these are local to us in Nottingham City, with a smaller number in Derby. The Trust has a strong link with Nottingham University Department of Education and works closely with leading educationalists there.
The decision to join the Trust was taken by Governors, who felt that school improvement could be enhanced by greater involvement in the training and support available to member schools. Having considered a number of alternatives, it was apparent that this trust best shared our child-centred philosophy and values. Importantly, Transform school maintain their own identity and uniqueness, with many decisions affecting day to day running of the school remaining with the local Governing Body.
Our staff engage with numerous support networks, sharing good practice, visiting and hosting colleagues from other settings and our children are involved in many of the enrichment events arranged through the Trust.
Our Curriculum Vision
At Parkdale Primary, we aim to offer a rich and engaging school experience in which children are willing partners in their own learning. They enjoy school, form friendships for life and become responsible, respectful young people. Our curriculum is diverse, thought-provoking, creative, inspirational and tailored to be relevant to the lives and interests of our pupils. We aim to provide a wealth of memorable moments and experiences. We are committed to delivering a broad curriculum and not to narrow our focus to the ‘tested’ areas. This is what our Governors, parents, other stakeholders and pupils have told us that they want and expect.
Our most recent Quality Assurance Visit noted the breadth and quality of our curriculum as a major strength, particularly in sport and the Arts. Subsequent QA visits from the Trust have supported this view. We are currently in a period of curriculum review. Having consulted at length with stakeholders, we have adopted a ‘values-led’ curriculum
Our Learning Values
Our learning values should be evident in all that we do at school. We draw focus to each individual value over the course of a half term. Children are taught about the constituent elements of each value and begin to understand the importance that we place in each. Assemblies are used to introduce and explore the values in greater depth. We also try to incorporate the value in other curriculum areas whenever possible. By emphasising the importance of these key tenets we aim to embed these values within our curriculum, our staff and our pupils.
A Values-Led Curriculum
The curriculum builds upon The Transform Trust’s core values and our Teaching and Learning Values, providing opportunities and situations for children to practise and develop these skills and attributes throughout their time at school. Encompassing this- and the British Values- alongside this knowledge rich, concept driven, blended curriculum, we endeavour to create successful global citizens ready for the challenges that lay ahead in our ever changing world.
Our three ‘driver values and themes are:
Environmental Responsibility & Sustainability
Peace, Social Fairness and Equality
Diversity and Wellbeing
These form the core of our topic work and much of our English. All lead to children undertaking a termly ‘real-world’ social campaign or activity.
As well as these drivers, we explicitly aim to engender the following skills and attitudes:
• Collaboration is crucial to successful, independent learning. Through effective collaboration we begin to understand the importance of cooperation, of taking turns, of respecting difference and diversity, of friendship, of being fair, of sensitive listening and of unity.
• Resilience is about being determined to succeed, setting a goal and sticking to it. We aim to foster a willingness to take risks and an acceptance of failure. We take positives from all that we do and learn from our mistakes. We are responsible for our own learning and develop high self-esteem.
• Compassion is about kindness and concern, about friendship and love, about communicating effectively and understanding the needs of others. Through our focus on this value we expect to develop thoughtful, considerate children who are empathetic, respectful and kind.
• Creativity and Innovation is the value through which we hope to inspire children to appreciate their individuality, to be imaginative and inquisitive, to inspire and be inspired! We aim to nurture originality and dynamism through continued exposure to the latest design, technological innovations and art.
• Exploration – all children love to explore. By focusing on this value we aim to encourage children to become active learners and to be curious and confident when experiencing new things. Exploring the world beyond their own classroom will help to develop a respect for nature and a love for the outdoors. We like children to try new things out, independently or with appropriate support.
A variety of experiences and opportunities are provided for all children to enrich the curriculum, broaden their horizons, promote digital connectedness and raise aspirations. We believe that everyone is a leader- adults and children. We promote this in our children from an early age; we want them to see themselves in the curriculum and have a strong vision for their own future. We pride ourselves in changing this curriculum to reflect the current world we live in.
Children in Reception follow the national ‘Early Years Foundation Stage’ curriculum and learn through a mix of self-chosen and directed play, exploration and some formal teaching. All children are taught synthetic phonics.
From Years 1 to 6, the curriculum covers similar skills and concepts to the National Curriculum of 2014, although this has been adapted to reflect and be driven by our core driver values.
Subjects taught are English (Reading Writing, Speaking & Listening), Mathematics, Science, Geography, History, Physical Education, Religious Education, Music, Art, French and Design Technology.
Enrichment is important to us. School should be fun! We participate in the Transform Enrichment Diploma, programme of lots of extra activities for each year group. As well as this, we operate our own ’50 Things To Do Before You Leave Parkdale’ and try to facilitate as many of these in school as we can.
We run all sorts of after school clubs, trips and residential visits.
Relationships and Sex Education (SRE) From September 2020, Relationships Education became statutory in England. Community consultation on this was completed in the year 2020-21 (delayed due to the Covid situation).
At Parkdale, we focus on teaching the nationally expected content with regard to relationships. The content is focussed on the Relationships aspect, preparing children for healthy relationships and developing understanding appropriate for life in modern Britain. Sex Education is not compulsory, but continues to be offered at Year 6 only. The right of withdrawal still exists for this.
Subject matter such as growing and developing and life-cycles is covered as part of the national Curriculum for Science.
Our curriculum includes Religious Education (R.E).The school is not affiliated to any religious denomination and we follow the guidelines from Nottinghamshire’s own agreed syllabus for Religious and Moral Education. Our Religious Education and Acts of Collective worship reflect broadly, and in the main, Christianity and Christian ideals. To reflect our community, we have weekly input from a representative of a local Mosque. Out assemblies focus on finding similarities and common ground between the beliefs of people of various faiths and those who of no faith. No one faith or belief is promoted over another and no child is made to pray or join in with anything inappropriate for their own family circumstance.
The syllabus also includes education relating to other world religions and we believe that it is important that our children know, understand and respect other people’s cultures and beliefs. The school will make arrangements for pupils whose parents who wish to exercise their right to withdraw their child from collective worship or Religious Education.
Swimming is part of the National Curriculum. There is an expectation that all pupils can swim at least 25m by the time they leave Primary school. Swimming is not optional. All of our pupils go swimming in Years 3 and 4 and continue in Years 5/6 if they have not managed 25m
Early Years - Making a Great Start
We believe in getting children off to the best possible start. Our Early Years Team are all specialists, with a passion for their phase. They teach the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Curriculum. Much of this involves learning through play.
In September 2021, we realised a long-term ambition to open our own Nursery, admitting children from 3 years. The work to create a Nursery provision comlpeted a long-term project to develop top class accomodation and resources for Early Years, which has included creating a highly specialised staff team, building work, development of outdoor play facilities and a huge amount of new resources.
You can see much more of what our Nursery and Reception classes do at their own pages:
As well as class teachers, we have specialist Early Years teachers to provide additional support and to lead learning through play and experience.
We also employ a Speech & Language Therapist to support with early language and communication development.
In 2017, we were the winners of the Communication Trust’s national Shine a Light Awards – Primary Setting of the Year.
The educational charity Challenge Partners has accredited our Early Years as an Area of Excellence (Spring 2019).
Our team will organise a variety of transition events to enable pre-school children (and their parents/carers) to visit and get used to their new surroundings.
They also put on lots of special events, including ‘coffee and cornflakes’ socials before school, demonstrations of how they teach phonics and number and much, much more.
Of course, our objective is to educate children to a high standard and to get them
ready for the next stage of their lives – socially and academically.
Our children have to complete statutory national assessments for which our results
are analysed and published by the DfE:
• At the start and end of Early Years
• In Phonics at the end of Year 1
• In Reading, Writing and Maths at the end of Year 2
• In Reading, Writing, Spelling Grammar and Punctuation, Maths at the end of
Pupils are continually assessed by their teachers at all years in-between to check
their progress from their starting points. This may involve tests and/or observation
or deductions made from their ongoing work.
By the end of Key Stage Two, our pupils tend to be above national averages on most measures. This generalisation does not always hold true and different cohorts of pupils perform differently, as – naturally – do individuals
A Reflective, Improving School
Our most recent OfSTED (May 2014) was ‘Good’ in all areas. We were due inspection in 2018, but academy conversion put this back for at least a further three years. Covid-19 has delayed that further.
We, our own Governors and the Transform Trust, all continually monitor and evaluate our provision and our results and we think we’re better now than then. Lots has changed. We would like to think that an ‘Outstanding’ judgement is a realistic aim for our next inspection.
However, we are reflective and responsive. There are aspects of our outcomes which
we want to improve. For example: we have completely re-vamped our approach to the teaching of reading; we are developing our interventions to support Disadvantaged pupils, so that they achieve as well as their non-Disadvantaged peers.
Our staff are continually offered professional development to make them even better teachers. We work with networks of other schools to support one another in good practice. Much of this is within the Transform Trust, although we
still work closely with our local Notts County Council Family of Schools and engage some support services from Notts CC.
We set homework and we do expect it to be done. It is an important part of learning and it backs up what we do in school.
Homework is set in line with Department for Education guidelines, the amount increasing as the children get older.
We expect regular reading, recorded in a ‘Reading Diary’, there are spellings (sometimes known as Rocket Words) and regular number skills practice, for example times tables.
We provide an online learning platform for maths, called IXL. This has focussed activities right from Reception to Year 6. New admissions will be given a login to this and it can be accessed from home. Many of our children use it several times a week and it has a great impact on their progress.
In response to consultation with parents and children, we adopted a ‘menu’ of homework from which children can choose activities. Many of these are designed to promote our ‘Learning Values’, the idea of studying or working at home and working collaboratively with an adult.
Many people have told us how much they have enjoyed working on a project with their children and we get some fabulous, creative results!
Keeping Fit and Healthy
We have Gold and Enhanced Healthy Schools status, meaning we have been recognised for our work on physical and emotional wellbeing.
Recently, we were upgraded to the Gold Standard on the National School Games accreditation. This reflects the high levels of participation in sport, both within school and against others, along with the quality of our P.E. Much of our P.E is delivered by specialist sports coaches.
We run school teams in many sports – most notably, we have recently been county champions at football (girls) and cricket.
We are currently investing significantly in the development of cricket – our national Summer sport and one whihc means a great deal to many in our community.
We have recently changed our unifomr policy so that children come to school in their PE kit on ‘PE Days’. This creates more time to be more active and reduces the ‘lost kit’ problems that can arise!
Our Sports Days are competitive and inclusive. Everyone takes part at their level and everyone’s participation scores points for their house.
We do have a uniform policy and we are quite strict about it! In the Winter, this includes a shirt and tie. This is not compulsory for our Reception children, but many of them still choose to wear a tie because it looks so smart.
Sweatshirts, jumpers and cardis are black. Trousers black or grey.
Some of our Muslim girls wear a hijab, which we ask to be black or grey.
In the Summer, polo shirts become an option, along with green ‘gingham’ dresses.
Our uniform supplier is currently Price and Buckland and you can buy online.
Trainers are not allowed, other than for P.E. On the subject of which, we also have a P.E uniform – see Uniform Policy here:
Admissions are not managed by us! You need to apply for a place via your Local Authority. Notts County Council if you live in the county, Nottingham City if you are a City resident.
These are the current criteria:
STANDARD RECEPTION CRITERIA:
INFANT AND PRIMARY SCHOOLS 2019-2020
1. Children looked after by a local authority and previously looked after children
2. Children who live in the catchment area at the closing date for applications and who, at the time of admission, will have a brother or sister attending the school or linked junior/primary school
3. Other children who live in the catchment area at the closing date for applications
4. Children who live outside the catchment area and who, at the time of admission, will have a brother or sister attending the school or the linked junior/primary school
5. Children who live outside the catchment area
We are a popular school, full in most years, with a waiting list. However, spaces do become available!
Our Planned Admission Number (PAN) is 60 per year group, giving us a capacity of 420 pupils in all. We are generally at or very close to this number at any given time.
We provide a wide (and continually reviewed and expanding) range of extra-curricular activities and enrichment. In association with our P.E specialist provider, we run many sports clubs. These are inclusive and not dependent on ability.
We do run competitive sports teams, often at a very high standard. Selection for such fixtures is very much dependent on ability, though we do try to give everyone a go where possible.
Sports Clubs through the year include: Football (on many levels), Tag Rugby, Athletics, Hockey, Lacrosse, Cricket, Basketball, Table Tennis and many more.
Other clubs include Drama, Choir, Rock-Band, Needlework & Textiles, Science, Dance and more besides.
We offer Residential Adventure visits for Years 5 and 6 and all year groups get out and about where and when they can.
We operate an exciting enrichment programme called the Transform Enrichment Diploma (known to us as Ted!), alongside our own progammre ‘50 Things To Do Before You Leave Parkdale‘.
Attendance matters! We expect our pupils to attend regularly and to be on time each day.
We have a member of the team responsible for supporting with attendance and they will get involved if a child’s attendance starts to cause us concern. This can involve referral to outside agencies where the concern is serious.
We do not authorise holidays in term-time and the attendance policy agreed by our Governors includes that we will request the issuing of Fixed Penalty Notices where unauthorised holiday is taken. Authorised leave in term-time is limited to small number of ‘exceptional circumstances’ which, by definition have to be unavoidable and which cannot be scheduled for other times. Examples include illness, visiting seriously ill relatives, funerals, important religious observances, immediate family weddings. Generally, we authorise the day only – with a day either side for travel if we agree it is necessary. For our Muslim pupils, we authorise one day for each Eid.
On the first day of absence due to illness, please phone the Office and leave a message. You can also email: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you do not contact us, we will contact you as we have a policy of checking up on any child not present where we do not know the reason.
The School Day
We operate an unusual school start! This came about because families told us they liked the stagghered start we put in place during the Covid-19 pandemic. For our part, we valued the extra time this created to get children settled and learning each day. It also gives us extra time for wellbeing and giving children extra support.
1st arrival window: 8-15-8:25 for an 8:30 start
2nd arrival window: 8:30-8:40 for an 8:45 start
In both windows, parents can choose to wait with their children or drop them to a supervised area.
The school day ends at 3:30 for all children
Friends of Parkdale
The Friends of Parkdale is a parent teacher association to which all parents and staff belong. Friends of Parkdale has two main functions, which are to organise social events for everyone associated with the school and to raise much needed extra funds to enhance the education of children at Parkdale.
The annual general meeting is held in October and all parents and staff are invited. If you would like to get involved or become a committee member, please come along to the AGM or call into the school office to contact the secretary of the Friends of Parkdale.
Our school dinners are lovely. They are provided by Aspens Catering and even lots of our staff tend to order them! There arw always: two main meal choices, including a vegetarian option; a baguette option; a jacket potato option.
All of our meals meet strict nutritional standards and our kitchen as the highest possible hygiene rating.
Meals cost £2.30 (£1.95 for Nursery children) and are ordered directly from Aspens, once yu have the relevant code from us.
We really encourage take-up of a dinner, but some children still prefer to have their own packed lunch, which is fine. You can choose to send your child with a packed lunch if you prefer. There are some rules about what this can contain, but essentially it needs to be a healthy mix and sweets and sugary/fizzy drinks are not allowed. Crisps and other salty, high fat snacks are discouraged.
Free School Meals and The Pupil Premium
Under current national policy, children in Reception and Key Stage 1 are all entitled to a free school meal.
Automatic Free School Meals stop at Year 3. If parents/carers are on certain benefits, they can apply for free school meals to continue. This is good for the school and good for the child as school also receives a significant amount of money, called Pupil Premium, to support the education of the child. This money buys us extra support, staff, resources etc
Who can apply?
You may qualify for free school meals if your child attends a Nottinghamshire County Council School and you receive one of the following benefits.
Child Tax Credit, provided they are not entitled to Working Tax Credit and have an annual income (as assessed by Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC)) that does not exceed £16,190
income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
income-based and Contributions-based JSA and ESA on an equal basis
Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
Guarantee element of State Pension Credit
Working Tax Credit run-on – paid for four weeks after the person stops qualifying for Working Tax Credit
Universal Credit – during the initial roll-out of the benefit.
More on Pupil Premium. This is important!
If your child is in Reception or Key Stage 1, they are entitled to a free school meal automatically. However… if you are on certain benefits you can still apply for your child to also receive the Pupil Premium. We need this! It is anonymous and there is no stigma. Lots of our pupils are entitled to it.
If you even think you might be entitled, please ask us. We can even help with the application, which is very simple and almost instant.
Full details are available here:
Such a caring place with wonderful staff … one of the many reasons I’m so glad I moved my child to Parkdale
I love Parkdale because everyone cares about me so much.
I admit I was very anxious about sending (my child) to a big school. I am so glad I did. He loves it and he loves that the older children come to play with him and teach him games. He is having so much fun and will be so ready for school.
I just wanted to say thank you to all involved in providing the year six children with the breakfast this week.
My two were so excited all weekend (I even saw other children running to school this morning. 🤣)
It was also the first thing they told me about when I saw them tonight. I think it totally took any stress off their up and coming sats. 😊
So thank you
I like the diversity… the way different cultures all celebrate things together…
Great leadership… who respond to the needs of both students and parents. Friendly, apprachable and accessible.
I can’t believe the support the school staff have given to me and my family in such difficult personal times. I never expected you to do anything to help about things that are not to do with school. I can’t say thanks enough.
I found your school an inspiration.
In two principal ways.. one, the pupils, two, your teachers and their brief descriptions of humanitarian themes on your curriculum.
One..the pupils – they had manners. They cooperated with and helped each other. They were friendly to me and their teachers. They tried all tasks even those that were very emotionally and intellectually challenging and frightening such as rock climbing and abseiling – two activities that immediately arouse fear responses that are necessary but tend to block rational thought processes in all of us .
Watching them support one another through those two trials in particular in an unusually empathic way was heartwarming to see. Those for whom the task was far too much were not treated cruelly – quite the opposite.
Watching them walk back to the Hostel after the long days activities always made me smile and feel good…boy,girl,ethnically and racially and culturally diverse interacting spontaneously just the way envisioned by the great Martin Luther King as you know who spoke of his dream that only the content of character is important. The world is cruelly divided and deliberately so. There are no racist children however and your school and others like it are quiet possibly our only hope.
I have lost trust in our Political Institutions and in career politicians .We don’t hear enough of the good news. I am grateful for the opportunity to hear and experience some .
Just wanted to say a huge and massive thank you to absolutely everyone at Parkdale.
Our child is emotionally thriving in school, academically she isn’t where we’d all hoped but considering her early years she is doing brilliantly and is making really good progress.
Mrs Chalmers has been the teacher she has needed – nurturing whilst encouraging her to get on with what she should be doing (not an easy task at times). Mrs Chalmers has been honest from the start and we have really appreciated that honesty. Mrs Hutchins wove a magic spell with her phonics and she passed her phonics screening – amazing. A big shout out to Mrs Skeet – she continually has a huge smile on her face – again amazing after a day with our kids!!!!
Our child has loved the after school clubs and has taken part in all of them, and loved the year 1 trips.
Your entire team are friendly and approachable,
We’re really excited Mrs Troop will be her year 2 teacher, and sheis excited to be going into year 2 but sad as she’s leaving Mrs Chalmers – we’ve been really worried about the transition as she has struggled the last 2 years, Covid meant the transition wasn’t as any one of us would have wanted, this year has been fabulous – she met Mrs Mason during Well-being club, and you had your open evening on one of the hottest days of the year when most other schools had closed!!!!!!! She thinks she chose her new classroom – well done Mrs Chalmers, that’s impressive work.
Have a wonderful and well deserved summer break.
Thank you once again
Teaching staff all take the time to get to know each child…the school always keep the children at the forefront of everything they do.
The nicest school I’ve ever worked in, in every way. Staff, children, parents… Can I come back soon please?
I was very impressed with how iPads are being used in Early Years, it’s clear to see the work that has gone into ‘training’ students to use them with purpose and the impact of this is a fluid environment that supports expression with technology.
I wanted to write this as I feel Miss Parkin deserves that extra bit of recognition.
Throughout this Academic Year she has taken the time to thoroughly get to know my son in her class and as such his time in R Holly has been nothing short of wonderful! Nothing is too much trouble for Miss Parkin and she regularly replies to Emails outside of her working hours which does not go unnoticed or unappreciated.
All of us have read generic reports before, ones where we know the names have been copied and pasted; the report we received today, written by Miss Parkin, clearly took much time as it was entirely unique to S.
Naturally she will receive a thank you gift from us at the end of term but if you too could thank her that would be amazing and if there are any bonuses (doubtful at this time in Education, or indeed in Education in general) she certainly deserves it and more!